Joy Stories: From Communion to Eucharist by Colleen Spiro

"The one who sat on the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new.'” (Revelations 21:5)

When I was a child, I loved going to the Protestant church in our small New England town. I especially loved going on the first Sunday of the month when we received communion. While our church taught that communion was only a symbol of Jesus' Body and Blood, I never understood what it all meant. But I somehow knew it was special.

Over the years, my family drifted away from church, and I attended only sporadically. But when I did go, I still loved to receive communion. I didn’t know why. I just followed my heart.

When I met my husband, Rich, he was divorced and a non-practicing Catholic. We didn’t attend church but had many discussions about faith and God. Rich cleared up a lot of my misunderstandings about Catholicism. After we got married, my father-in-law kept praying that I would convert, but I had no interest at that time.

After our second son was born, Rich decided to get an annulment of his first marriage. When the annulment was granted, we remarried in the Catholic Church and started attending Mass. At first, I wasn’t that comfortable, but I went to church because I wanted my husband to be happy and I thought it was a good thing to do for our boys.

Gradually I became more comfortable going to Mass, though I felt left out because I couldn’t receive the sacraments. Soon I had a nagging feeling that God was asking me to make more of a commitment. And it was in the middle of Mass that I knew what that meant.

I will never forget the surprised look on Rich’s face when I told him I wanted to take the classes to become Catholic. And I remember the moment I knew I’d made the right decision. It was at the class on the Eucharist. As the priest explained the Real Presence of Jesus, tears ran down my cheeks. This is what I had been unconsciously searching for since childhood.

Over 26 years ago, I became a Catholic at the Easter Vigil Mass. When I received the Body and Blood of Jesus for the first time, I knew I was home.

There have been many changes since then. My husband is now a permanent deacon in the Catholic Church. I am a spiritual director, a Benedictine Oblate and a parish secretary. I write about faith and the spiritual life. I can hardly recognize myself when I look back at my life and how much things have changed.

As I look back at my conversion, I realize that over time, the Holy Spirit had been changing my heart, slowly but surely, day by day. And then when I began to attend Mass and I heard Gods Word over and over, my heart softened and opened up.

And all things became new.

Colleen Spiro is a Catholic convert, mother and grandmother, and is married to a permanent deacon. A Benedictine Oblate and certified spiritual director, Colleen loves to share her faith and encourage others through her writings, talks and retreats. You can contact Colleen’s website is Catholic Prayer Life. She blogs at Thoughts on Grace and Finding God in the Everyday.

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About Nancy Ward

Nancy HC Ward is a journalist, author, and speaker who blogs about Catholicism, her conversion, and Christian community at JoyAlive.net,
 7 websites and 7 magazines. She loves to share her faith story and help others share theirs through her Sharing Your Faith Stories seminars, also available on DVD. She contributed four chapters to The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion. She facilitates the Dallas/Fort Worth Catholic Writers and a critique group for the Catholic Writers Guild, where she serves as a board member.
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